While this year’s NAYDO conference went virtual for the first time in its 40-year history, there was no shortage of incredible insight or applicable lessons to be gained during the three-day event. Our own National Sales Director Cody Norton gave a wonderful presentation on the tactics he’s seen YMCAs use to convert and retain donors. Here we’ll recap some of the highlights from his session, so you can transform your approach and raise more money for your organization than ever before.
Everyone is a Donor
The secret to converting and retaining donors starts with a shift in mindset. Many YMCAs see donors and members as two separate groups, when in reality they should be one in the same. In other words, when it comes to seeking out potential donors, everyone connected to your organization is a prospect—especially members. Only 6% of members ever give to their Ys, and only half of those give more than once in their lifetime. This statistic leaves a huge group of members waiting to become donors.
Increase Opportunity for Inbound Interest
The first step to converting and retaining more donors is to increase inbound interest. One of the major ways individuals interact with your YMCA is via the web. Spending the extra effort to improve your online presence can go a long way in increasing inbound interest.
Start by searching your YMCA along with the phrase “charitable giving.” Is it easy for individuals to find your Y and give? Then, shift the focus to your website. Is there a prominent call to action asking visitors to donate? While these are just a couple easy ways to increase inbound interest, engaging the help of a digital partner like Daxko’s digital marketing agency can take your efforts much further. Through web strategy, content creation, reputation management, and much more, you can multiply inbound interest and convert more donors.
Increase Tailored Outreach
While inbound opportunities certainly play a role in creating donors, the majority of donors are converted through outbound efforts. Since many YMCAs don’t have the luxury of employing a full marketing team, it can be difficult to create and execute strategic and customized outbound campaigns that will target and convert all the right members.
With an integrated CRM tool like Daxko Engage, staff can build customized member groups, then deliver the tailored messaging they need to hear through email and text. Once a member takes action and becomes a donor, they’re automatically taken off that list, so you have peace of mind in knowing they won’t receive messaging that’s redundant or no longer relevant. In addition, the option to use and customize templated messages means you’ll save countless hours drafting content and can rest assured your messaging hits the mark.
Increase Number of Outreach Attempts
The final step to converting and retaining members can be distilled down into one simple phrase: “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.” Did you know it takes an average of eight attempts to engage a member in a conversation? The majority of YMCAs only reach out to a member between one and three times, which means there’s plenty of room for improvement when it comes to persistence.
The problem with persistence is it that it takes time and effort to follow-up with prospects, and much of you staff is strapped for time. It can also be difficult to find just the right words after you’ve already reached out four or five times. One of the best ways to increase your outreach attempts is to enlist the help of an artificial intelligence engagement tool like Conversica. With a digital assistant, you can ensure that prospective donors are being nurtured throughout the entire lifecycle of donorship, whether they’ve donated once and you’re looking to re-engage or if they’re considering donating for the first time.
Are you ready to convert and retain more donors?